a Message from Hannah Pruitt, COO of RJL Solutions
To operate a thriving business, the relationships within it must be solid and rooted in authenticity. At RJL Solutions, that is something we pride ourselves in maintaining. When I talk about the relationships within a business, I mean everything. From the relationships with coworkers to those we have with our clients; we must cultivate authentic conversations that create safe environments that allow for everyone to be heard. This, to me, is customer service.
As RJL’s Chief Operating Officer, I’ve learned firsthand how important relationships are to the success of our customer service. Through my position, I’ve been fortunate enough to get to know our clients personally and build relationships based on trust. These connections developed through good customer service are imperative for a business to grow and succeed. You can offer the best service in the world, but without customer service and individualized communication, it won’t matter.
In 2019, Forbes examined just how essential customer service is for a business. They found that 96% of customers find a company’s customer service an important decider in their loyalty to an organization. In fact, Forbes cited customer service as the top reason clients will choose to leave or discontinue business with a company. If your clients don’t feel appreciated and heard, their loyalty to your business won’t last. Retention and keeping those valued relationships among clients are incredibly important for a growing business. Companies that provide good customer service are five times more likely to have clients purchase from then again and keep their business (Forbes). But it’s not just returning customers that cite customer service as important. Forbes found that brands with higher customer service ratings will bring in 5.7 times more revenue than their competitors who are unable to provide superior customer service experiences. The way you treat clients directly shows them how the company operates and the morals in which they are built on. It tells your clients whether or not they should trust you, do business with you and continue their relationships with your business and its employees.
Customer service strengthens your business and provides all employees the opportunity to grow both within their professional and personal lives. At RJL, our relationship with our clients aids our employees as they gain feedback and continue to better themselves. While customer service can be viewed as a social skill, all it takes is the ability to connect and be open. Excellent service doesn’t come from the chattiest, funniest or most outgoing team member, it comes from an employee and a team who strive to get to know their clients and promote growth. Forbes argues that companies with excellent customer service have employees who are 1.5 times more engaged with them than other organizations. Treating your clients well can empower employees to do better. This attitude opens dialogue for honest evaluations and feelings to be shared. Employees are then able to learn the ways they are impacting the company and the community they serve. Through customer service and honest relationships with clients, a business and its employees can visualize their needs to become better for their clients and their community.
This unique year has taught businesses a lot about their interactions with those they serve. When moving to digital formats, in-person interactions were almost impossible as customer service became exclusively digital. It created a new challenge as many found it harder to connect through a screen. Sitting through meetings with endless lags and constant connectivity issues felt like a bridge that made it impossible to connect with clients and to inspire positive environments. It became even more important to emphasize the relationships built upon good customer service and continue to provide high level attention and detail through digital relationships. When your customer service is rooted in authenticity and a genuine want to help those you work with, the relationships can survive and thrive in any format.